SAN DIEGO — A southern white rhino calf born six weeks ago at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park now has a name, officials announced Tuesday.
A supporter of the San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance chose the name Neville in honor of a South African doctor who positively impacted the donor’s life, officials said in a news release.
Neville, a male, was born to his mother Livia on Aug. 6 weighing approximately 110 pounds. Now 250 pounds, officials say the rhino is nursing well and has been busy exploring his two-acre habitat, “frequently stopping to splash around and roll in mud wallows” as a way to stay cool and keep bugs away.
“All rhino births are significant, and Neville’s birth represents an essential step in San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance’s Northern White Rhino Initiative, showing Livia can carry a calf to term and care for her offspring,” officials said in the release. “This is vitally important, as Livia is now among the female rhinos at the Nikita Kahn Rhino Rescue Center who could potentially serve in the future as a surrogate mother to a northern white embryo.”
The announcement of the calf’s name comes two days before World Rhino Day on Thursday.